Last Thursday in the House of Lords a statement was made by Diana Barran who since September has been the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Minister for the School System). She referred to her announcement that she had made on 17th December. She stated that “adults and young people will benefit from more high-quality and flexible education and training – levelling up opportunities and supporting more people into higher skilled, higher wage jobs” and she went on to explain that a further nine Institutes of Technology had been announced and that will join the 12 that were already up and running. She then went on to state
The government’s network of Institutes of Technology are unique collaborations between employers, further and higher education providers – backed by £290 million of government funding – that specialise in delivering high-quality Higher Technical Education and training across a range of STEM occupations and industries, in subjects such as advanced manufacturing, digital and cyber security, aerospace, automotive engineering and healthcare to train people for technical careers that will plug skills gaps.
Now clearly here in Sussex which is one of the areas that was included in that statement, the majority of businesses are small or micro enterprises and so we will need the colleges that are involved to work with small businesses. The total information from both the December and the earlier announcement can be found here in this website page. It includes the Sussex reference which is listed as follows
|Chichester College Group (covering the Coast to Capital LEP area)||NatWest Group, Wates Group, Roche Diagnostics, Gatwick Airport Ltd, Ricardo, Southern Water, Irwin Mitchell, Pearson, Gatwick Diamond Business and Gatwick Diamond Initiative||Crawley College, Brinsbury College, Haywards Heath College, North East Surrey College of Technology (NESCOT), Worthing College|
|University of Brighton, University of Sussex||construction, engineering and manufacturing, technologies, information and communication technologies|
So clearly these two Universities and the Chichester College Group need to work alongside agencies such as Sussex Chamber of Commerce and the other local Chambers of Commerce as well as the other business network groups to ensure that the opportunities are made as accessible as possible. Another comment from Diana Barran was as follows
People looking to upskill or retrain will have access to more than 100 short courses starting from September 2022, lasting between 6 weeks to a year, helping to fit training around their lives. More than 20 universities and colleges will offer the courses in subjects where there are skills shortages such as digital, Net Zero, Education, STEM and Healthcare, and offering an alternative to studying a traditional three-year degree. Student finance will be available to students taking the courses, marking the next step in the development of the government’s Lifelong Learning Entitlement which, from 2025, will provide individuals with a loan entitlement to be the equivalent of four years of post-18 education they can use flexibly over their lifetime.